NASA Tournament Lab has selected the following winners to share in the $140,000 final prize of the Honey, I Shrunk the NASA Payload, The Sequel challenge. The winners are:
- SunSlicer, submitted by Team Sun Slicer - $100,000
- SunSlicer is an innovative, miniature, low power, versatile, TRL7 flight ready XRAY spectrometer with custom packaging and thermal design to adapt it for a harsh, miniature rover-deployed lunar environment. A key feature of SunSlicer is the lunar dust mitigation concept that utilizes a rotary shutter/filter wheel and wiper system that is driven by an extremely compact custom motor implementation and geartrain. SunSlicer has many impactful mission possibilities for the Artemis program in both identifying lunar resource potential and characterizing the lunar environment including prospecting for rock forming elements leveraging solar flares, measuring flare producing solar active regions to high angular accuracy and monitoring background XRAY radiation.
- Puli Lunar Water Snooper, submitted by Team Puli Space - $25,000
- Hydrogen is one of the most valuable lunar resources, essential for future missions, permanent human presence and habitats on the Moon. Therefore it is crucial to find, characterize and map lunar hydrogen. The Puli Lunar Water Snooper is designed by Puli Space exactly for these tasks: it identifies hydrogen and therefore all hydrogen-bearing volatiles like water ice, it measures quantity and distribution of these resources in the lunar surface regolith, mapping even a large area when mounted on a rover. The payload performs its measurements by detecting cosmic ray and low-energy neutron particles coming from the lunar regolith, using 3 industrial CMOS image sensors - two of them bearing a special, neutron sensitive coating on top -, monitoring the lunar radiation environment at the same time. This design is a low-cost, simple and extremely lightweight solution, which are all key features for short-term robotic exploration missions to find and utilize resources on the Moon.
And in Third Place, the Challenge Sponsors wanted to highlight the excellent work of the final team for delivering a complete payload package. Thus an additional prize of $15,000 was gathered for their recognition.
- μRAD - A Micro-Sized Radiation Assessment Detector , submitted by Team μRAD - $15,000
- Radiation is one of the greatest threats to extended human habitation in space. Shielding from and mitigating the effects of this radiation for the Artemis program will require detailed surveys of the radiation environment at the lunar pole. Currently existing devices capable of making the required measurements are too large and too expensive for widespread deployment on Commercial Lunar Payload Services (CLPS) rovers and landers. Therefore, Team µRAD’s payload is a miniaturized radiation measuring instrument with many of the same features as the radiation assessment detector (RAD) on the Curiosity rover, but whose size, weight, and power (SWaP) are compatible with smaller exploration vehicles.
For the winners of this challenge, a representative from HeroX will be in touch to payout your final prize in the same manner as the past prizes.
Furthermore, representatives from NASA may continue to communicate with you about updates for payload documentation or any other related questions.
Congratulations once again to our winners!